West Sacramento, Calif. — Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC) received a $180,000 grant from the Wells Fargo Foundation this week to build the capacity of the rural West’s Tribal and Native housing organizations by expanding the reach of RCAC’s Tribal Housing Excellence Academy (THE Academy), a training program that aims to increase the quality, quantity and types of housing in Tribal and Native communities.
In 2014, RCAC launched THE Academy, which features intensive capacity building sessions to take housing developments from concept to construction, and coaching from seasoned housing development experts. The Wells Fargo grant will fund an introductory course to make THE Academy’s core concepts more available to Native organizations that are curious about RCAC’s development approach. The introductory course will provide advice and training on overcoming common challenges, and the importance of creating and nurturing strategic partnerships that can help these projects become successful.
Participants in the introductory course will come away with concepts and strategies they can put to practical use in their communities. Self-generated data will allow them to carry out more accurate and strategic community planning, and will support their efforts to raise outside funds for housing programs and development. The training will take place in three different locations in RCAC’s 13-state footprint during a six-month period, but will be open to Tribal Housing Entities and Native housing developers from across the country.
“We’re pleased to continue our partnership with Wells Fargo,” said Stanley Keasling, RCAC Chief Executive Officer. “The introductory course this grant supports will help participating Native housing organizations and their leadership understand the skills and effort needed to support new housing development, build community consensus regarding future participation in THE Academy, and allow us to offer scholarships to some of the participants.”
“We believe in supporting the efforts of nonprofits like RCAC as part of our $50 million commitment over five years to American Indian/Alaska Native Tribal communities, which enables us to work with tribal leaders to identify solutions to get more people into safe, stable, and affordable homes,” said Connie Wright, senior vice president with the Wells Fargo Foundation housing affordability philanthropy. “There are too many people in every community across the nation being forced by rising housing costs to sacrifice other basic needs like food, healthcare, and education, so we recognize the importance of RCAC’s efforts to bring more quality housing to Tribal and Native communities.”
Founded in 1978, RCAC provides training, technical and financial resources and advocacy so rural communities can achieve their goals and visions. RCAC serves rural communities in 13 western states and western Pacific islands. Services are available to communities with populations of fewer than 50,000, other nonprofit groups, Tribal organizations, farmworkers, colonias and other specific populations. RCAC staff provides direct services in program areas including affordable housing, environmental services, economic development and lending.
About Wells Fargo
Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC) provides banking, investment and mortgage products and services, as well as consumer and commercial finance, through 7,700 locations, more than 13,000 ATMs, and the internet (wellsfargo.com). With approximately 262,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. With its corporate philanthropy, Wells Fargo aims to pave a path to stability and financial success for underserved communities by focusing on housing affordability, small business growth, and financial health, among other local community needs. In 2018, Wells Fargo donated $444 million to nearly 11,000 nonprofits. For 10 consecutive years, Wells Fargo has held the honor of No. 1 in workplace giving by United Way Worldwide. Wells Fargo team members also actively support communities by donating more than 2 million hours of volunteer time in the last year. News, insights and more information on the company’s overall corporate responsibility are available at Wells Fargo Stories and www.wellsfargo.com/impact.
Julia Helmreich, Director
Communications, Development & Events
(916) 447-9832 ext.